JULIUS BENEDICT (1804-1885): Piano Concertos in C Minor, Op. 45 & in E Flat, Op. 89, WALTER MACFARREN (1826-1905): Concertstück in E Minor for Piano and Orchestra.
Catalogue Number: 07L001
Reference: CDA 67720
Description: Like Handel, Benedict was born in Germany, went to Italy to finish his studies and moved to England where he spent the rest of his life, gradually adapting his compositional style to English tastes. His operas were very Rossinian but his piano concertos attest to his studies with Weber and the prevailing Hummel-Field-Weber piano styles of lightness of texture, easy lyricism and glittering virtuosity. There's much Mendelssohn in his style also, as to be expected of one who lived in England from 1835 on. Benedict wrote three concertos but the first is mostly lost (only the opening movement remains); the E flat is actually the second, dating from 1837 but revised for publication in 1867 and the C Minor dates from 1850. You'll also find a Mendelssohnian Song Without Words-like main theme in the eleven-minute Concertstück of 1881 by George Alexander Macfarren's younger brother, his only extant work for piano and orchestra. Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra; Howard Shelley (piano).